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Grouse............... Duck

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Grouse............... Duck

Today, 12th August, is the start of the Grouse Shooting Season.
Especially in the Lake District, according to local news this morning.
So, if you are a Grouse.......... Duck.

I do quite a lot of 12 Bore shooting, though only at Clay Pigeons at Organised and Supervised Events.
(Doesn't half make your shoulder ache when you've not done it for a while)
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

Seasons are a throw-back to Victorian times. In the end it is only the rich and landowners who benefit from them. Do not forget the unnecessary slaughter of wild animals who only want their food supply for obvious reasons.
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

Not a subject I want to get involved in for fairly obvious reasons.
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

The Grouse who are shot are not "wild" they are bred by gamekeepers to be shot, just like the pheasants (double check spelling) round here.
BTW I have NEVER shot at/a grouse or a pheasant, and I don't own the land my house sits on, so I am not a landowner.
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

I Cannot understand the logic of breeding something only to shoot it for sport.
No doubt someone will be pointing out we breed chickens and other animals for food but we do not go around shooting them for sport, Grouse & Duck are of course eaten but who can be sure every bird is killed instantly by the pellets from a shotgun ?
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

It is a case of "one man's meat is another's poison". No one is forcing the people to shoot the grouse/duck/etc but as long as it is a MONEY MAKING business then it will continue. Like fishing, why fish just to put the fish back? If I fish then I expect to eat what I catch. Otherwise I see it as cruel to the fish.
Also the fact that lots of birds are bred then released means that the wild life gets a shot at them first, I think the %age of birds shot to birds released is quite low.
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

I agree however there is another side to it
The breeding of grouse and management of the grouse moors - at vast expense - seems to be a major contributor to wild life diversity
This is paywalled http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/opinion/article4172314.ece but here is an extract
Quote
As somebody who lives in the rural north and knows the issue at first hand, I am in no doubt that the opponents of grouse shooting have it backwards. On both economic and ecological grounds, the shooting of grouse is the best conservation practice for the heathery hills of Britain. If it were to cease, most conservationists agree that not only would curlews, lapwings and golden plover become much scarcer, even locally extinct, but much heather moorland would be lost to forest, bracken, overgrazing or wind farms.
Be in no doubt: management for grouse is conservation. The owners spend money to maintain the heather moors that constitute an ecosystem found almost nowhere other than Britain. They prevent overgrazing, re-establish heather, remove plantations of non-native sitka spruce, eradicate bracken, manage drainage, periodically burn long heather, kill foxes and crows, refuse to build subsidised wind farms, and thus maintain the great open spaces of the Pennines and parts of Scotland where people are free to walk. In the past decade alone, moorland owners have regenerated 57,000 acres of heather.
More than £50 million is spent on conservation by grouse moor owners every year. That’s roughly twice as much as the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds devotes to its entire conservation efforts. There is no way the taxpayer would or should stump up that kind of cash to look after heather moors. But somebody has to: there is no such thing as a natural ecosystem in this country and conservation requires human intervention.
Grouse moor owners recoup some of their costs by leasing shooting to wealthy clients, who often fly in from abroad, fill the local hotels and create crucial local employment. In the economy of many Pennine dales, grouse shooting is irreplaceable, adding more than £15 million a year nationally and supporting 1,500 full-time jobs. It redistributes money from hedge-fund managers in the south and overseas to some of the poorest parts of rural Britain. Much as you might wish them to, rich folk won’t spend lots of money in the Pennines to watch rare birds; but they will to shoot grouse.
Astoundingly, golden plover, curlews and lapwings, the three most iconic wading birds of the uplands, live at five times the density and have more than three times the breeding success on moors with gamekeepers compared with moors without gamekeepers. That this is because of gamekeeping was confirmed in a series of experiments by the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust near Otterburn in which matching areas of moor were either keepered or not, then swapped around after four years.
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

Whilst I do not have the knowledge to dispute anything in that article I have often walked over moors in both the Trough of Bowland and similar places disturbing grouse and pheasants, it's possible to get very close before they fly off at fairly slow speed compared to other birds and you would have to be almost blind not to miss them.
Money making, well that's not disputed by the article, Sport, well for me that's the wrong title.
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

I've been on a few pheasant drives and I was surprised to learn that most of the birds are buried because there is no market for them - no one wants to buy them. It's a great shame as I think pheasant is a great meat.
I've also been on a couple of wild boar shoots. Boars can cause a huge amount of damage to crops and land so they need to be controlled. Wild boar is a great meat, just a shame it's quite expensive and hard to get hold of in the UK.
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

I agree about wild boar, had some in northern Italy about 25 years ago, lovely meat. Haven't had pheasant for many many years, I remember walking down the hight street and seeing 2 butchers with pheasant/rabbit/etc hanging outside, mind you that was ~40 years ago, these days nothing is on display outside.
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

@AndyH,
Been on a few wild boar shoots, guess this was abroad as I have been up Wild Boar Fell a number of times but never seen any although my sight is not as good these days !
Wink
TORPC
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

Quote from: Strat
Not a subject I want to get involved in for fairly obvious reasons.

Same here tbh Sad
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Re: Grouse............... Duck

@ gleneagles
I know quite a few people who will go on multiple shoots, sit at their points all day and see nothing. Even when you do, they can move at 30mph or so which requires superb marksmanship.
It's very popular to hunt wild boar in parts of Germany/Austria/Czech/Slovak/Italy - a tradition that goes back centuries.